A POLICE surgeon said that she saw injuries on a prostitute's face that showed she had been beaten.

Lorry driver Kristopher Searle formerly of Deerhurst Way, Toothill, is accused of raping three prostitutes.

Forensic medical examiner Dr Linda Medland told Swindon Crown Court that she carried out an examination of one of the alleged victims on July 29.

"She was rather quiet and withdrawn, not at all chatty," said Dr Medland describing the victim.

"There was swelling to her right cheek, swelling at her nose, dried blood on her nostrils and the right side of her lip was swollen.

"I had already been told that she had been hit in the face.

"Her injuries, in light of that explanation, I felt the blood was likely to have been caused by to a blow to the nose.

"The swelling to her nose could have been from a blow of some kind.

"I believed it was a blow from a fist, but it could have been caused by something else the same size and shape as a fist.

"It would have had to be more than one blow to cause injuries to the nose and cheek. Inside her mouth there was bleeding from the gums and a cavity in that area. I think there were two teeth missing.

"I felt the teeth had recently been removed, knocked out somehow is a possible explanation. There was fresh blood there.

"I felt it had happened in the last couple of hours. It was a Sunday morning and I felt it was not very likely she had just come out of the dentist."

Also giving evidence was the police officer who interviewed the vice girl when she arrived at Gablecross police station to report the attack.

PC Laura Bush told the court: "She told me the vehicle involved was a silver Transit van.

"She said she was taken to the back of the van and that's where offence occurred. She said she had been beaten about the face causing her to lose two teeth."

The prostitute previously told the court she feared that she would not get out the van alive.

The alleged attack took place just hours after another vice girl claimed she was raped by the 32-year-old lorry driver.

Searle, who gave the court an address in Newbury, Berks, denies eight counts of rape and one of kidnap.

The case continues.